The last few months I have been gathering questions from the user community for AMZ Review Trader and working with them to help resolve some of the issues we experience. I was very happy when they took the time to answer all of our questions and comments in my first user community questions email to them, which I shared in my post Do you have questions about AMZ RT 2.0???
In their blog post this morning, Your Reviewer Questions Answered! it was great to see that once again they have taken your questions seriously and are addressing them. I think it is a step in the right direction for them to take this upon themselves and my hope is that they continue to respond to the user community in this manner.
I am sure countless AMZ Review Trader members submit questions but their post this morning is so similar to what I submitted to them that I see it as a direct answer to many of the questions you shared.
I was actually starting to worry a little that they would not respond, beyond telling me that they were working on the list of questions I had sent and would get back to me. I hope that they will address the rest of the questions I have submitted on behalf of you in the next week or so and that in the future they are more responsive to questions people post on their FB page and blog.
I wanted to share the last email with you so that you do know that I have taken your questions and concerns seriously and am looking forward to the answers myself, but we will probably have to watch their blog for the answers instead of me hearing from them personally and then being able to share that with you and then continue the process..
A blog post from them will actually reach many more members than a post from my blog and my purpose has always been to help people that are going through the same things that I am so this is actually good news and as long as they respond, this will be much more efficient than the way we have found answers in the past.
User Community Questions Submitted in February
Hello Nav A and to whoever else is reading this email. If you are not Nav, could you be so kind to forward this to Nav or anyone else who may be able to continue this discussion concerning 2.0 and RT in general, I would greatly appreciate it.
I do have some follow-up questions that I have compiled for you from the FB groups and from my original blog post.
1. You stated: We can boost those reviewers to the next tier especially the ones who do great video reviews and are top reviewers.
How does a reviewer request that someone consider their account for a boost?
Is this just for video reviewers?
Can quality photographers who include more than one or two images request this also?
What about someone who’s word count is above and beyond what you consider A+?
2. Leave Product Review Button: When you click this button on the Dashboard, why can’t you link directly to the product so that we don’t have to search? Just like you do for the link when we click to purchase the product.
3. Seller Feedback Button: Same issue here, how come it doesn’t link directly to the Seller for that product.
4. Word Count: How many of our last recent reviews is this based off of and is it still off of all of our Amazon reviews like you stated in your last email to me? I thought I read in Self Help that is is based on only AMZ RT reviews so I am a little confused about this.
5. Confirmed Reviews: How come you are only counting AMZ RT Reviews here whereas in other metrics you are counting all Amazon reviews completed?
6. Metrics: When will your systems have all of our reviews counted and our word counts accurate? I know you are probably chasing a running target here. What is taking so long to get caught up? Human Resources? Computer Systems? Capital Funds? Restrictions from Amazon? I am sure you did not expect to have these problems and delays. (I have deleted some parts of the email here that were just theorizing about technology related issues)
I have noticed that in emails we get, it says things like if you have reviewed this item, please ignore this email. Were you not tracking that before? I think I read in something on Tracker that before there was no way for a review to be verified except by the Seller tracking their own reviews. Is that correct?
Issues with Sellers
1. Is there going to be an enforcement of Seller TOS that states that Sellers should not be involved in any kind of manipulation? This includes keyword searches, wishlisting, and requiring us to ask questions along with our review. A Seller should only ever request that a reviewer leaves an honest and unbiased review. I recently wrote an article on my blog about this that goes more in depth and includes screenshots from Seller Executive Relations and Amazon Seller Support. Keyword Searches, Wishlisting, and other Seller Requests No one knows exactly why so many accounts are being wiped lately but we all know that the data between a Seller and Reviewer is easy to link. Sellers should not be breaking these rules in the first place, putting their accounts at risk and thus potentially ours since we all follow under the general Amazon TOS. Often you don’t know until you are accepted whether or not the Seller has these conditions. A Reviewer could report the seller at that time, but the seller should never have been able to do that in the first place and there seems to be no one stopping them from doing this over and over. It is hard enough to interpret the Reviewer TOS but now we have to try and understand the Seller TOS as well. It would be great if AMZ RT would enforce this up front with the Sellers.
Do you agree that this is manipulation?
2. AMZ RT’s Role in Seller TOS Violations: There has also been a lot of discussions lately about AMZ RT letting Sellers continue to violate Amazon’s TOS. Reviewers are concerned it is putting a lot of scrutiny from Amazon on them. I have read many posts about whether people should continue to use your site and I have received even more private messages about this. Every website strives to follow Amazon’s TOS and I have every confidence you are not letting this just slide.
What actions are you taking to combat this? Many websites, not to mention FB groups, have publicly stated they will no longer participate in seller manipulation activities and have stopped doing that. Will this be something you make an announcement about soon?
How are your Sellers educated on Seller TOS? Is it their responsibility? I have been reading more and more on AMZ Tracker and there are several things that are questionable things that they are teaching their Sellers. I know that Tracker is not Trader, but it is the same parent company.
2. Sellers Who are Habitual Offenders: I know we are able to use the Report a Problem with a Seller but it seems like the same Sellers are the ones being reported over and over. There are endless reports of Sellers doing the same thing to multiple Reviewers over and over again. Not only during the same promotion but in promotion after promotion that they list. Some are notorious for having codes that don’t work. I know you teach them how to create codes in your AMZ Tracker course, how come they have so many problems with it? We also encounter Sellers who change the prices of their items all of the time or “run out of codes.” Just today I saw a letter from a Seller stating they had 50,000 reviewers apply for their product. Since it was so in demand, they decided to raise the price and just send everyone a 50% off code instead of giving it to those that were approved for Free. I have attached a screenshot of that letter.
3. Confidentiality: Some users have seen a correlation to some recent Sellers and the amount of spam mail they have started receiving. It seems all of these Sellers have listed products on AMZ RT, but no codes are ever given. I did not think that they had access to our emails, has this changed After we apply for a promotion, are they able to our email address then? Over the last 2 weeks, this seems to have really increased.
1. The product listing on AMZ RT, sellers should list any special requests and the number of codes they have available. That way, if Sellers are going to continue to disregard Amazon’s TOS and your TOS, we can, at least, avoid them and help spread the word to new Reviewers. Seller Dashboard: It was so helpful for you to list what sellers can see in their Dashboard. I see that you provide a direct link to our profile but they would have to go to your profile to see our current Rank correct? Would you consider showing our rank right before our profile link? That would be very helpful to both the Sellers and to the Reviewers who are working hard to continually improve their rank.
2. User Emails and Feedback on FB page: I see so many complaints from people that you do not reply back to them or answer their questions on FB. I explain that everyone should consult the Self Service area first and then the correct way to contact you through email with the word DESK in the subject line. Users who continually use this as their first avenue of support do not realize that they area clogging up the system, making it that much harder to for you to get to the real problems.
How come you don’t send out email updates with feature releases or other educational materials to users? Usually, when there is a major software release by large companies, users are notified of the changes and any new changes explained. How come this isn’t done? It would be so helpful even to pick a section from your Help Section once a week and email that to users so people who refuse to go through there will have a glance at it and start to understand how valuable it is.
What other improvements and/or features have you added since the initial 2.0 release? What about your next major release. I know you have told me before that you do not have plans for an Android app, have you changed your mind at all on that?
Is there anything else that you would like to share about at this time?
Lynn Marie White
Here is a copy of their last reply to me, the second email that I got stating they were working on it and would get back to me.